From the Left



Calls for Joe Biden Not to Run Raise an Age-Old Question We All Face Eventually

Clarence Page, Tribune Content Agency on

It’s high anxiety time for the party of President Joe Biden, although that’s hardly a novel condition for Democrats.

Only a year before the 2024 election, the latest nervousness stems from a recent poll that finds Biden trailing Donald Trump in five of the six most important battleground states.

“And what makes these poll numbers particularly shocking,” as comedian Sarah Silverman said while guest hosting on “The Daily Show,” “is that the man Biden is losing to is currently on trial in every jurisdiction in America.”

Well, not quite. Trump only faces 91 criminal indictments, along with legal challenges under the 14th Amendment questioning his ability to run again for office.

But misgivings about the likely Republican nominee’s court fights appeared to be largely overcome by worries about Biden’s age and his handling of the economy, according to the poll by The New York Times and Siena College.

The results show Biden losing to Trump by margins of 4-10 percentage points among registered voters in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada and Pennsylvania — all states that Biden won in 2020.


Biden came out ahead only in Wisconsin, by 2 percentage points, the poll found. Biden’s biggest liabilities with voters were his age and economic performance, particularly regarding inflation.

As problem issues go, inflation is one over which presidents, regardless of party, have less control than they’d like.

Age is something none of us can control.

As a 70-something, I’m hardly alone in wondering why the age question is so often raised about the 80-year-old Biden while Trump, who is just three years younger, gets a pass.


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